Published: October 20th 2012October 19th 2012
Starbucks breakfast ....this is getting to be a habit!
Had been recommended to visit Red Rock Canyon, just a short drive away, was a lovely clear day so set off ready to enjoy the scenery and take some photos.
Entered the Red Rock park area, set off on the scenic drive, along what we realsed was a one way road for 13 miles through the canyons, about 5 minutes into what started as a spectacular drive, the gas warning light came on and we realised the tanks was almost on empty...we couldnt turn around as the road was one direction, we had driven about 3 miles of the 13 mile tour and had no idea how long the gas reserve would last...so with a lot of "colourful language" bickering and blaming each other we drove round scenic route, desperately hoping to get to the exit without the tank running dry, bear in mind, its 98 degrees, in the desert with no cell phone signal...stressful doesnt quite cover it!
At last we saw the exit ahead and a sign for the nearset gas station which turned out to be an old style gas pump in a cute little town
called Blue Diamond, think we made it by the skin of our teeth, maybe Vegas was our lucky town!
After all that stress we needed some retail therapy so headed for the Vegas Premium Outlet mall, thousands of square feet of retail pleasure at the end of the Strip, most unlike me, I didnt have my shopping head on, so Alex faired much better, but I at least found the Converse store and did some damage in there, a girl can't have enough pairs of All Stars!
Back to the hotel with a very special evening ahead!
Originally when Alex asked me to marry him about 11 years ago, my idea of a dream wedding was a trip to Vegas and an intimate little event in a chapel on the Strip, however, we managed to get caught up in the whole "big" ish wedding in the UK thing and that was that. So as we were in Vegas in our 10th year of marriage, not to mention the life altering (for the better) events of last year for Alex, we decided to renew our vows during this trip.
Yesterday, i went off to find myself a
dress in a popular US discount store, Ross. Amusingly I found myself in the evening gown section along with a number of Russians, Spanish, Irish and Americans all with the same purchase in mind, some for a vow renewal and other brave ladies for their actual Vegas Wedding, all very parallell universe, I can tell you! So I managed to find myself not one but 2 dresses, both designer names and each one at less than $15 thats over a 100 times cheaper than my original wedding dress!
So...back to the big day... we chose a 6pm slot in a small chapel called imaginatively "a Wedding Chapel In Vegas" ! A nice young lady was our wedding co ordinator and after paying up, signing some papers and collecting our free bouquet/buttonhole I was whisked off by Peter, the Jewish Ukranian photographer, now I really hate getting my photo taken but Peter was so stereotypically Vegas immigrant he actually made me feel quite at ease, even though I couldn't understand half of what he was saying. After my individual photos, I met up with Alex in the chapel. We were told at this stage, the minister was running late, so
Peter took us off for our joint photos, taking in some iconic Vegas backdrops like the Welcome To Vegas sign, The Stratosphere Tower with the lights of the Strip in the background, plus a few homeless people, broken toilet and a transexual prostitute!
The minister finally arrived, Peter set up his camera, I massaged my feet blistered from my new shoes and Alex mopped his sweaty brow....come on its not like we've not done it before....
The service itself was really sweet, performed by a nice female minister and with a lot of meaning, even taking into account the brashness of the surroundings and the somewhat factory assembly line feel of these kind of events, we both really enjoyed it, quiet, intimate, uncomplicated and spontaneous.
Congratulations were bestowed upon us by the staff at the chapel followed by 2 envelopes suggesting more outrageous tips for minister and photographer alike, we collected our digital photos from Peter and then had to rush off as the 7pm couple were just arriving! A cute hispanic couple, him suited and booted and her in bright blue sequinned bling!
Now for the Honeymoon! So back to New York New York, found
ourselves some "newly weds" luck and won enough money on the roulette table to pay for the next 2 nights hotel rooms!
Changed back into my jeans and flats, phew and then partied the evening away in the "Times Square Bar" with great music from the duelling pianos, playin all the old favourites, couple of cold Bud Beers and a dipper selection of pub grub! A great wedding reception! And sadly our last night in Vegas....
There are more photos below